MATT BACHAND (LIVING WRECKAGE, SHADOWS FALL): “It’s Something We Wanted To Do For Quite Some Time Now And It’s Great That It Is Finally Seeing The Light Of Day”

Matt Bachand of Living Wreckage
Photo: Francesco Foto

Fans of the New England Metal scene will surely see some familiar faces in Living Wreckage. The band features current and former members of bands such as Death Ray Vision, Shadows Fall, and the legendary Anthrax. Living Wreckage’s bassist Matt Bachand (also the guitarist in Shadows Fall) took the time to talk with Metal Express Radio about the band’s upcoming debut album, writing and recording together for the first time with this band, the band’s plans for the rest of the year, and more. Check out the chat below!

Metal Express Radio: How did the formation of the band come about?

Bachand: The band took quite some time to get to where it is today. It has been MANY years since the seeds for Living Wreckage were planted. Not Long after Shadows Fall went on hiatus and Jon was playing with Anthrax full time. He and I had discussed writing new music and doing something else. He writes a lot of material and wanted to do something with it. It was intended to be more Hard Rock based than Metal. When the first few riffs started being thrown around I was playing guitar, not bass. Jon and myself were in a cover band called Kobra Kai at the time (which I played bass in), and as it turned out our guitar player Jon Morency was quite a good drummer and we started jamming with him. Shortly after that, I was VERY busy working two jobs and attending school full time as well. Not wanting to lose momentum, Jon kept writing and trying to put a lineup together. Guitar player Matt Lebreton came in during that time and was the perfect fit as part of the idea was to have two lead guitar players to trade off solos. I am strictly a rhythm player so this made a lot of sense and I moved over to bass. A few singers were auditioned before welcoming in Jeff Gard, whom we had known from Death Ray Vision, and the band continued to write. I was not personally involved in much of that process due to time restraints of my work and studies. As soon as I had obtained my degree, I jumped right in and by that time the songs that became our debut album were pretty much finished.

MER: The band’s self titled debut album is set to be released September 23rd, what can you tell fans about the upcoming album?

Bachand: I think the most important thing to get across is that it does not sound like Shadows Fall or any of our other bands like people might expect. Yes, it has some similar elements but Living Wreckage is a much more Rock based project than a Melodic Metal band. It’s something we have wanted to do for quite some time now and it’s great that it is finally seeing the light of day. We hope people enjoy it for what it is and not what they expect it to be.

MER: How was it writing and recording together for the first time with this band?

Bachand: We had only intended to record a demo of about 5 songs or so. The whole process was very immersive, which was great for us. We just lived at the studio for a week with no distractions. We had the remaining material more or less planned out but not complete. What ended up happening was that we were very well rehearsed going in and the process went very quickly. I do believe Jon Morency had recorded all the drum tracks in only three or four hours. Since all the microphones were already set up and we were ahead of schedule, we decided to just capture the other material as well. If we did not spend the time at the studio twenty-four hours a day I don’t think that would have been possible. In fact, with “Endless War” and “Sink Below” specifically, I just sat down with Jeff one night with about fifty cheap beers after we were done for the day and wrote those on some old paper plates and pizza boxes (which I still have). I tend to work much better under pressure and one night I pretty much said “we are writing these tonight and tracking these tomorrow”. Somehow, we actually pulled it off.

MER: The band has released three songs from the album, what kind of feedback have you been able to receive from them?

Bachand: The reaction has been really great. We are definitely making an effort to build this project up and play as much as we can. I am sure people have some expectations about what they think Living Wreckage will be like just because of our other bands. We are really trying to stand on our own and I can say so far so good. For the most part, most of our live shows have been headlining, which we are trying to avoid so we can get in front of some people as a support band. The few times we have done some opening slots, the crowds have been just as solid as our own shows and the EP sold really well. Just recently we also gained a lot of traction with “Endless War” on Sirius XM so we have been very grateful for all the support so far.

MER: Do you feel those three songs give fans an idea on what to expect from the full album?

Bachand: Yes, I would consider that to be true. We really chose those songs because they show a wide variety of what our sound is turning out to be. I would think there is quite a difference between the aggressiveness of “Endless War” and a song like “One Foot in the Grave” which is more melodic, especially vocally. We want to touch upon all those things and have variety on a record. Each song should have its own identity and not just sound like nine of the same song thrown together on an album.

MER: What do you see as plans for the band after the album release?

Bachand: We are really looking to get out and play live as much as we can. Ideally, we are looking to support larger bands to get in front of some people and show them what we do. We have played a bunch of shows already, but now it will really be nice to have some recorded music to share as well. We really want to get this ball rolling and not stop. One thing that is VERY important to us is for people to realize that Living Wreckage is NOT just a side project for us, it is a priority and want to stay just as busy as any other band out there.

MER: For those that are familiar with the members other bands (Anthrax, Shadows Fall), how would you describe the similarities and differences to Living Wreckage? 

Bachand: With anyone who has been playing for a long time, you tend to develop a style that is always going to shine through. I would say when you hear Donais solo, you know that it’s him. And, writing riffs, sure there are similarities there but this band is not intended to be a copy of those other things. We are all influenced by so many different things it’s hard to pinpoint just one, so we like to say that is like Pantera meets Skid Row. Living Wreckage is definitely more “Rock based” then Shadows Fall for sure and it is intended to be as such.

MER: How are you and the rest of the band managing time between your other bands?

Bachand: It really has not been too difficult. Shadows Fall is at the point where we are only doing a few shows here and there. Anthrax is the busiest of the bunch but it really doesn’t get in the way at all. We just schedule around them.

MER: Is there anyone that you hope to tour with that you haven’t yet and why?

Bachand: I have been very lucky to play with most of my influences over the years. Speaking personally, If I had to pick one I am REALLY into Ghost lately. So, that for me would be huge.

MER: What are your hopes for the band’s future?

Bachand: Right now, since the album is about to be released and we have a product to show, we really want to get out there live and play as much as we can. We do have a lot of material for the next album as this one was recorded almost two years ago. But, right now it’s all about this debut album and getting out there playing shows is the best way to present that material.


  • Matt Zaniboni

    Matthew is an interviewer here at Metal Express Radio. He started his passion for music journalism back in his college radio days serving as the Heavy Metal Director at WKKL out of Hyannis Massachusetts. During Matt’s tenure in radio, he has had time working for commercial stations in Boston Massachusetts such as WAAF, WZLX AND 98.5 The Sports Hub before landing with Metal Express Radio. Anytime you want to talk heavy Metal, hockey, Guiness, and dad life, Matt is your guy m/

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